.Before we dive into a Dark Souls Remastered Review, we need to get the 3 people who don’t know what Dark Souls is, caught up. Dark Souls released in 2011 and almost single-handedly established a new sub-category of the action RPG genre. In 2018, the influence of the game is hard to ignore. Dark Souls’ has a notorious reputation in the gaming community for being incredibly difficult. Cuphead is called things like “the Dark Souls of platformers.” The cultural impact of Dark Souls is everywhere.
Concerning actual gameplay, the game had spawned its fair share of imitators, which include some excellent games like FromSoftware’s own Bloodborne. Even more traditional games like the Witcher 3, take some cues from Dark Souls, in combat and gameplay mechanics.
Enter, Dark Souls Remastered
Which leads us to our Dark Souls Remastered Review. This new remaster of Dark Souls aims to provide both new and old players with an improved experience over the original port. Dark Souls has been released for PC, Xbox One, and PS4. Nintendo Switch releases its version later in 2018. QLOC, a Polish game studio, handled this remaster. Virtuos is developing the Nintendo Switch port.
Although games that have been heavily influenced by Dark Souls are plenty, none of them, even its own sequels, have done it better than the original. That’s not to say that there haven’t been games worth playing, but the remastered version of Dark Souls really reminds you why this excellent game needs to be preserved. This may be the primary reason that it exists. This now gives you the opportunity to play on your PS4 or Xbox One. It also allows you to finally play on your PC without having to deal with a broken port.
What has improved?
The best part of doing the research for this Dark Souls Remastered Review was playing this in 4K at 60FPS. This remaster also has various graphical improvements under the hood. The multiplayer component of the game has also received a hefty upgrade. The maximum number of players is now six instead of four. Dedicated servers really make it a much more enjoyable experience.
What hasn’t changed?
Not much more has changed though, which is a good thing. The remastered edition still keeps the eerie and unsettling aesthetic. The world maintains its air of mystery, and there is so much packed into Lordran that you can always find new ways to deal with bosses or items that you may have missed before. Even after playing the game multiple times, the exploration doesn’t seem to get old. The first half of Dark Souls really allows you to explore all of the different areas present, but the second half is a bit more confined. I know some players were hoping for new areas, but in playing this game to write this Dark Souls Remastered Review, we don’t think many (or any) level design changes exist.
What if I’ve never played it?
For someone who hasn’t had the opportunity to play Dark Souls yet, the remastered edition is definitely the best way to experience it. The cleaner textures and improved framerate significantly increase enjoyability for new players. The first edition had technical issues, which resulted in low framerates, even on very high-end systems.
There is a bit of a misconception around Dark Souls’ difficulty. While the sequels, especially Dark Souls 3, had ridiculously difficult bosses, the original’s bosses were never unfair. They fit perfectly into the definition of “challenging but fair.” Initially, they may seem impossible to beat, but after countless attempts and getting to know the boss, you could always defeat them without relying on luck. The game relies on its exploration to provide players with opportunities to discover hidden areas and learn from their past mistakes.
The bonfires are still a central part of the game and “humanity” system is still one of the game’s cornerstones. These aspects of the game can provide new players with interesting challenges, while also holding up for veterans of the series, as they are still quite unique, aside from the original game’s own sequels.
The conclusion from out Dark Souls Remastered Review, buy it!
Overall, in writing this Dark Souls Remastered Review we’ve realized the remastered edition is an excellent pick-up. Fans of the series looking to replay one of their favorites can dive back into the world of Dark Souls. Beginners should buy it as well if they have been intrigued by the series but haven’t given it a try.